*Our shops are open!*
Dover Street: 10am – 6pm, Monday to Saturday
Fulham Road: by appointment, 10am – 6pm, Monday to Saturday
Click for more information about safety measures in store.

SHAW, George Bernard.

Typed letter signed to the actor of Alfred Doolittle in Pygmalion.

6 March 1914 Stock Code: 134368
£3,500.00

Shaw unhappy with his actors

Reserve Ask us a question

Notes

Typed letter signed by George Bernard Shaw to Edmund Gurney, the actor playing Alfred Doolittle in the upcoming English premier of Pygmalion. Shaw was very unhappy with Gurney's portrayal of the character, which he observed in rehearsal - he writes that he wrote the part specially for him, and he should not let it be played too broadly.

He also criticizes Herbert Tree (playing Henry Higgins) and Mrs Patrick Campbell (playing Eliza Doolittle), writing of the latter that "there is no use in my coming back to the rehearsals until Mrs Campbell is tired of moving the furniture and begins to think about her own part a little". This unimpressed estimation is of interest, as Shaw went on to have an unconsummated but still passionate love affair with Mrs Campbell, leaving a remarkable epistolary exchange, most of which went unpublished until 1952, two years after Shaw's death, and 12 years after her death. Despite this initial hostile reaction to her performance by Shaw, she continued to play the part in the New York tour in 1915 and in the revival in 1920.

The letter is accompanied by a programme for the premier English performance at His Majesty's Theatre, performed soon after this letter on 11 April (the play was first performed in Berlin in November 1913). Also present is a typed list (and a carbon copy) of the cast and characters in the 1920 revival, and two newspaper cuttings on Mrs Patrick Campbell, one an obituary from 1940 and another an article on her and Shaw from 1952.

Confused? Read our glossary

Description

3 pages octavo, c. 650 words with 7 manuscript corrections by Shaw, tipped-on to a card strip and backing sheet. Housed in a custom green cloth chemise within an old green half morocco slipcase with green cloth sides, now a little sunned and rubbed.

Condition

Lightly soiled with old fold lines. In very good condition.

DELIVERY

With the exception of framed items*, Peter Harrington offers free delivery on all UK orders of rare books, maps and prints placed through this website. Delivery to USA and the rest of the world is similarly free for orders over £200.

View Full Delivery Details

 

ABOUT US

Established in 1969, Peter Harrington is one of the leading rare book firms in the world. It is a proud member of the Antiquarian Booksellers Association – along with ILAB, the PBFA and Lapada – and from shops in Mayfair and Chelsea, London, sells rare books, prints and ephemera to customers across the world.

Email: mail@peterharrington.co.uk

Tel: +44 (0)20 7591 0220


ABA Antiquarian Bookseller Association ILAB International League of Antiquarian Booksellers LAPADA The Association of Art and Anatique Dealers PBFA Provincial Booksellers Fairs Association

Our Guarantee Page

Ask us a question

DO YOU HAVE A BOOK TO SELL?
OR
CAN’T FIND THE BOOK YOU’RE LOOKING FOR?

Contact us with details of the book you are interested in or selling and we will contact you

Sell Old Books Help me find a book